Ronald Reagan Was the Greatest President, Poll Says

Categories: Politics
presidents-day.jpg
Make room for Ronald Reagan
A pre-President's Day poll showed that Americans think Ronald Reagan was the country's best president, even more so than Abraham Lincoln and George Washington, two of the most influential leaders in history.

Reagan scored 19 percent of the vote,edging out Lincoln who had 14 percent and Bill Clinton with 13 percent.

John F. Kennedy came in sixth place, followed by the current President Barack Obama. Pundits gave little credit to the the results, saying the fact that Obama made the top 10 list points to the absurdity of the poll, which has been conducted every year since 1999.

"There is no way on Earth you could say Brack Obama is seventh of all time considering he hasn't even finished his first term," said Bill Whalen, research fellow with the Hoover Institution.


Whalen says he was a little surprised that the man who escalated the Cold War was ranked higher than Lincoln, who fought to free the country of slavery.

He chalked it up to nothing more than out of sight out of mind. With Reagan's 100th birthday having just passed on Feb. 6, everything was "all about Reagan," Whalen noted. Fox News was "wall-to-wall Reagan."

Not to diminish Reagan's economic achievements, but people are influenced by the conversation that is right in front of them, Whalen said.

"When people look at the president they are influenced by pop culture, and what they see on TV, and what they read in the headlines," Whalen said. "There are four in modern time that have that right now: Obama, Bush, Clinton, and Reagan."

As time passes by, Reagan's influence over American politics becomes more obvious, which is another reason he was likely voted better than Lincoln, Whalen adds.

But if another spot popped up on Mt. Rushmore, would Reagan deserve it?

"That's the debate," Whalen said. "Some say it would be Franklin Roosevelt and others say it would go to Ronald Reagan."

It definitely would not go to George W. Bush, who trailed all the great leaders in the poll, showing up as No. 10.




Follow us on Twitter at @SFWeekly and @TheSnitchSF

My Voice Nation Help
11 comments
Sort: Newest | Oldest
susanhdean
susanhdean

It is simply impossible for me to believe that ANYONE, let alone a majority, could think of Ronald Reagan as a "great" President.  He was doddering old fool actor who thought he was playing the starring role in a movie about the President.

betty
betty

I'm sure the poll was done by a conservative group. Over 25,000 people died even before Reagan said the word "AIDS" And look at his Central American policy. The Iran-Contra?

UsAloeMan
UsAloeMan

What on God's Earth does Aids has to do with Reagan's legacy? Come on man! Do you think its actually Reagan's fault that America was just waking up to this new disease? Surley, it was horrible but blaming the president for not controlling this epidemic is just plain stupid! Just like any other liberal ideology that says donate millions of dollars in condom to the men's in africa to protect themselves against Aids! Seriously, think about this for a second... If you had aids and you knew you were going to die in 8 months do you honestly think about putting on a condom before having sex? Come on! Good theory as usual but practical is far from it. Another one says get rid of guns. Well, what if I killed someone with my car? What is everyone started killiing people with their cars does that mean that you have to take the cars away too? Liberals seem to blame it on the things that are not even the root of the problem!

tjohnson
tjohnson

this doesn't even touch on his illegal war in Nicaragua or Reagan's immoral refusal to address the aids epidemic. uh, mark in texas, the writer was commenting on a story she did not write. that is why she linked the story. it's a blog not an expose.

sfpragmatist
sfpragmatist

On Reagan's watch from 300,000 to as many as 500,000 people in Latin America were "disappeared"; several hundred thousand were tortured. Many were victims of right wing death squads who were graduates of the Georgia based "School of the Americas". SOA Watch has the complete data on those ties.

randyfleming
randyfleming

This is irrelevant as Americans are idiots , anyway.

Mark in Texas
Mark in Texas

Many things wrong with the story, including the way in which it is written. It is unbelieveable that anyone would put Lincoln ahead of Washington. Then to go into fantasy land and say that Lincoln "fought to free the county of slavery" or that Ronald Reagan escalated the Cold War is just really too much. That being said, it is disheartening that any president, Reagan, Clinton, or otherwise could even be mentioned in the same list as George Washington, a one of a kind Great leader!

rick in s.f.
rick in s.f.

Without debating the relative merits of Reagan or Clinton, what a dismal commentary this is on the condition of U.S. History curriculum in this country.

Now Trending

Around The Web

From the Vault

 

©2014 SF Weekly, LP, All rights reserved.
Loading...